Archive for the 'Dining services' Category

Interdisciplinary Studies student promotes ‘aquaponics’

INTS senior Chowgene Koay is  on a crusade to promote aquaponics — a technique that uses live fish and natural water filtration to produce a year-round supply of fruits and vegetables on a household scale.

Shorthorn article, Dec. 5

Update on carbon footprint reduction

Yesterday I updated the PSC Steering Committee on the carbon footprint reduction initiative. The committee requested that Sustainability Director Meghna Tare prepare a proposal on how to formally get footprint reduction planning underway.


North Central Texas Campus Climate Summit

On October 28th UTA hosted the North Central Texas Campus Climate Summit. The event was co-sponsored by the University of Texas at Arlington, the National Wildlife Federation’s Campus Ecology Program and the Texas Regional Alliance for Campus Sustainability. The student groups involved with bringing this event to campus were:

Air & Waste Management Association at UTA

Environmental Society at UTA

International Business Society at UTA

Student Planning Association at UTA

UTA Volunteers

The first-ever North Central Texas Campus Climate Summit brought together over 50 participants from 15 different universities and colleges in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The summit provided opportunities for faculty, students, staff and administrators from the region to get together to share ideas, best practices and resources to accelerate climate change and sustainability solutions. The main themes explored were 1) Transforming the Curriculum to Address Eco-literacy 2) Green Workforce Development and 3) Comprehensive Greening of Campus Operations.

NCTCCS Website

Program and Agenda

Mission Statement

Presentation Files

Workshop Descriptions

Sponsors and Organizers

“Food Inc.,” Nov. 10

Take a new look at food through the documentary Food, Inc. at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10, in the Lone Star Auditorium at the Maverick Activities Center. The film details the often unseen side of food production and the role of food in our lives and communities.

Freshmen Leaders On Campus is hosting the film, which is being shown in conjunction with the OneBook selection of Deep Economy.

Information will be available on topics addressed in the film and the complex issues surrounding food. Admission is free, but canned good donations for Mission Arlington are encouraged.

AASHE overview for 2008

The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, of which UT Arlington is a member, has issued its annual compendium of developments in campus sustainability. The 356-page volume provides an overview of sustainability efforts on hundreds of campuses, including UT Arlington.

AASHE Digest 2008 (pdf)

Summer course — Carbon footprint reduction planning

 Project Planning:

Campus Carbon Footprint Reduction

CIRP 5332 (course no. 51241)

Summer 2009

Wednesdays, 6:00-9:50 p.m., June 3 – August 13

Instructor: Dr. Jeff Howard, School of Urban & Public Affairs,

This graduate course will be devoted to assisting the University of Texas at Arlington with planning reductions in its “carbon footprint” – that is, reductions in its direct and indirect emissions of greenhouse gases responsible for climate change. During a parallel course in summer 2008, students and the instructor developed a report on the university’s carbon footprint, which now serves as the starting point for the President’s Sustainability Committee’s effort to plan effective means to reduce the footprint.

In collaboration with the instructor, students will examine preliminary recommendations included in the 2008 report, assess these in light of initial responses from the sustainability committee, and use tools such as the guide produced by the Association for Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education to develop further analysis and recommendations for formal presentation to the committee and the campus community.

Because climate change is increasingly prominent in public policy nationally and internationally, the course will provide students an opportunity to develop a skill set, conceptual base, and practical experience that can be applied in municipalities and institutions across the world. It also provides concrete assistance to a large university devoted to making improvements in its environmental impacts.

The course is expected to be of particular interest to students in Urban & Public Affairs, Environmental & Earth Science, Environmental Engineering, Architecture, and Business but is open to graduate students from across the campus (and conceivably to senior undergrads). Students interested in taking the course are invited to contact the instructor.


Committee begins carbon footprint reduction planning

At its December 16 meeting, the PSC voted to begin planning reductions in the university’s emissions of greenhouse gases.

A report released in 2008 described the “carbon footprint” for the baseline year of 2005, projected emissions in 2010 and 2020, proposed emission targets for “responsible growth,” and offered a series of emission reduction scenarios for several sectors (e.g., buildings, landscaping). Under the process initiated in December:

  • >>Several of the committee’s work groups will formally evaluate the 2008 report and develop recommendations on suitable emissions reduction targets. They will present summaries of their evaluations and recommendations at the PSC’s general meeting on February 10.
  • >>At the March 10 meeting of the steering committee, the soon-to-be-hired Sustainability Director will propose emissions reduction goals for each sector and for the university as a whole. The steering committee, in turn, will submit recommended goals to Pres. Spaniolo.
  • >>At the June 9 general meeting, the PSC will send Pres. Spaniolo a set of recommended amendments to bring the Sustainability Agenda into line with the emissions reduction goals.
  • >>At the June 9 meeting The PSC will request that the Sustainability Director report annually on the university’s progress toward meeting these goals and request that university-wide carbon footprint analyses be conducted in (or based on emissions in) 2010 and 2015.

Presentation and proposal, Dec. 16, 2009

Carbon footprint report (released in 2008)

PSC budget for 2009 announced

A PSC budget of $138,750 for fiscal year 2009 has been approved by President Spaniolo and was announced at the Oct.14 meeting. These funds are to cover the expense of implementing some of the Sustainability Agenda items approved in the spring.

It is important to note that this budget does not include numerous Sustainability Agenda items that are being funded under the regular budget of various administrative units.

Building & Development                        $ 0  (0.0%)

Communications                              16,250 (11.7)

Curriculum & Research                    5,000 (3.6)

Dining Services                                          0 (0.0)

Energy & Water                              10,000 (7.2)

Landscaping & Habitat                   12,500 (9.0)

Management Systems                   60,000 (43.2)

Purchasing                                                  0 (0.0)

Transportation                                     TBA

Waste Reduction                             35,000 (25.2)
Total                              $138,750 ( 100.0%)

Detailed budget (if you have difficulty downloading, contact me)

Sustainability Agenda

Got a green idea? Want to offer constructive criticism?

If you’ve got a suggestion or constructive criticism to offer, who you gonna call?

The President’s Sustainability Committee has 10 work groups. They function rather like subcommittees, each focusing on a single aspect of the university’s sustainability program. Feel free to contact the chair of the appropriate group.

Building & Development — John Hall

Communications — Amy Schultz

Curriculum, Research, & Community Engagement — Jim Grover

Dining Services — Sharon Carey

Energy & Water — Larry Harrison

Landscaping & Habitat — David Hopman

Management Systems –

Purchasing — Megan Topham

Transportation — Jeff Johnson

Waste Reduction — Becky Valentich

Going Trayless=Going Green

As many of you may have noticed, Dining Services is no longer using trays in Connection Café. This is to reduce food, water and chemical waste. Together, without trays, we can save more than 11,500 lbs. of food waste in just one semester.

This can be determined by using a national average of 1.5 oz. per student per meal saved, which was published in a white paper from ARAMARK Higher Education.

Going tray-less on college campuses is a trend emerging all over the U.S. This is a huge step amongst many efforts to reduce UT Arlington’s carbon footprint. Look for more Green initiatives like this in support of the President’s Sustainability Committee.

Aramark white paper